Royal Newfoundland Field Regiment Number: 740
Enlistment Date: 6 August 1942
Discharge Date: 28 February 1943
Royal Artillery Regiment Number: 971898
Enlistment Date: 1 March 1943
Regiment: 59th Newfoundland Heavy Regiment-22nd Battery
Stationed At: Tonbridge, Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent,
Hildenborough and Newtown.
While in Tonbridge, Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent, England, I started Heavy Gun Training. I learned how to use Hand machine Guns then I went from guns to tanks.
From November 1943 to 6 August 1945:
As a soldier of the 59th Newfoundland Heavy Regiment, Royal Artillery from Watfont, London, England, I took my Gunner's test and passed as A1 Gunner on Big Guns.
I was transferred to the 166th Newfoundland Field Regiment, Royal Artillery at Naples, Italy where HELL, on earth began. On the battlefield of Italy it was kill or be killed. I did this fight to help save our King's country and our fellow men.
I was with the Queen Battery as A1 Gunner Layer #1 gun. We use to fire 25 pound shells from it when we take up a position to put our guns in. We had to dig gun pits for the guns then we would camaflaugh them and ourselves so the Germans would not see us.
Each man had to dig his own slit trench in the ground. You would then pick straw to put in the slit trench to sleep on when we had the chance. I used an overcoat that I placed over my knitbag for a pillow and an army blanket to cover me. We had a little tent to go over the slit trench to keep the rain out. If you were lucky enough to get some sleep, you would wake up with the water running in on you. You could see the holes in your tent from straplin from German shells and bombs.
I did get wounded and spent one month in hospital. That was the year 1944. After leaving the hospital, I went back on the battlefield until the war was over im May 1945. On the 6th of August we left Italy for home, the day of my 23rd birthday. On the 22nd of August 1945, we landed in Newfoundland.
After we won the battle victory over the Germans, I got my discharge from World War Two. I did everything a soldier had to do, KILL or be Killed! I think this is enough on this part of my war life.
My buddies from Newfoundland was there with me: GUNNER ALEX SEAWARD, GUNNER HAYWARD HILLIER, SGT. JOHN SAMEUL HIGDON and SGT. MAJOR CLAYTON PARSONS from Bay Roberts, he was our commanding officer.
Not forgetting World War One, a lot of Fighting Newfoundlanders gave their lives on battlefields and never returned. As of World War Two, a lot of good Newfoundland people went to war to fight for freedom and never returned. GOD BLESS THEM ALL! In May 1945, the Germans surrendered. War over, happy day for our King's country and fellow men. VICTORY WON!
This is starting from March 1944 to 6th of August 1945, we left Naples for home. In between 1944 and 1945 is is too hard to speak about. This is only a part of what we went through in World War Two. This is a true story. I was that soldier, I was on the battlefield, kill or be killed. 971898 - GUNNER GEORGE HOWELL, Green's Harbour, Trinity Bay, Newfoundland. The date is 7th of February 1997, my story I will end. LOVE YOU ALL!
By: GUNNER GEORGE HOWELL
(2 February, 1996)
(Age: 73 4\12 Years)
Whenever my Uncle, George Howell was asked about his
war experiences, his reply would always be "It is too
hard to talk about." He could not talk about the war
but he could express his thoughts on paper. He told us
his story in his own way.
My Uncle, George Howell passed away at The Health
Sciences Center at St. John's, Newfoundland on the 25
of January 1997. We all love and miss him!